au·​to·​crat·​ic | \ ˌȯ-tə-ˈkra-tik How to pronounce autocratic (audio) \
variants: or less commonly autocratical \ ˌȯ-​tə-​ˈkra-​ti-​kəl How to pronounce autocratic (audio) \

Definition of autocratic

1 : of, relating to, or being an autocracy : absolute an autocratic government
2 : characteristic of or resembling an autocrat : despotic an autocratic ruler

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Other Words from autocratic

autocratically \ ˌȯ-​tə-​ˈkra-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce autocratic (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for autocratic



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Did You Know?

Autos in Greek means "same" or "self", so in an autocratic government all the power is held by the leader him- or herself. Autocratic governments are often called dictatorships, or sometimes autocracies. In everyday life, a teacher, a parent, or a football coach can all behave like autocrats as well.

Examples of autocratic in a Sentence

democracy is supposed to protect the people against the rise of autocratic rulers an autocratic Boy Scout leader who is under the delusion that he's still an army colonel
Recent Examples on the Web These protests, part of a regional movement to overthrow autocratic governments known as the Arab Spring, were a high-water mark for the idea that the internet would free the world. Noam Cohen, Wired, "What the Arab Spring Can Teach Us About GameStop," 29 Jan. 2021 And autocratic governments could tighten regulations on social media as a way to stifle dissenting voices. Shashank Bengali, Los Angeles Times, "Facebook banned Trump. Leaders who say worse often go unpunished," 15 Jan. 2021 Still, many observers share the view that autocratic or authoritarian governments will feel more constrained, and such regimes, themselves, do appear to have sensed a change in the wind. Ned Temko, The Christian Science Monitor, "‘America is back.’ What that means to the world.," 12 Nov. 2020 Magufuli's autocratic tendencies became visible early in his presidency, the report said. Tom Odula, Star Tribune, "Tanzania intensifies repression ahead of polls, says report," 12 Oct. 2020 The same goes for the controversy over voter identification laws—something that election observers routinely try to get autocratic governments to adopt. Marc Champion,, "Election Monitors Who Watch Hot Spots Worry About the U.S.," 28 Sep. 2020 The protests that started exactly a decade ago against Egypt’s president, Hosni Mubarak, then 30 years in power, were widely seen as driven by the internet, which was considered unusually open there for an autocratic government. Noam Cohen, Wired, "What the Arab Spring Can Teach Us About GameStop," 29 Jan. 2021 Trump lavishes autocratic strongmen with praise, yet behaves subserviently to them. Megan Garber, The Atlantic, "Donald Trump’s ‘Pussy’ Presidency," 17 Jan. 2021 That administration ruled in an increasingly autocratic fashion until Abiy took power in 2018. Washington Post, "World Digest: Dec. 25, 2020," 26 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'autocratic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of autocratic

1769, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for autocratic

see autocrat

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Time Traveler for autocratic

Time Traveler

The first known use of autocratic was in 1769

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Statistics for autocratic

Last Updated

25 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Autocratic.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Feb. 2021.

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